Web Hosting

How Much Should I Charge for Web Hosting Services and Design?

The question of how much to charge for designing and hosting a website will depend on numerous factors.  Before establishing your pricing structure, you will need to know what type of business the website is for and a projection of traffic on the site. The pricing for web-hosting is simpler to figure out. Find the parent hosting company for which you want to resell hosting and determine what the hosting plan will costs. Add a premium for your managed services, and then sell the web hosting based on traffic and bandwidth projections. GreenGeeks.com is one of the numerous companies that offer reseller hosting, and you can find their pricing plans on the website. Once you have determined how much to charge for hosting, it is time to determine your rates for web design.

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How to determine your pricing for website design

One of the quickest ways to understand the price averages in the industry is to visit the websites of companies that offer similar services and view their pricing. Another valuable tool in determining your pricing is experience. How long does it take you to build a basic website? You can establish your pricing based on an hourly rate, flat rate, or you can charge a monthly price that includes website maintenance.

1 Hourly rate

Determine an hourly rate that is commensurate with your experience and use that hourly rate, plus the costs associated with building the site, and set your pricing depending on the size of the website. The average hourly rate for a freelance web designer is $75.00. That rate may be higher or lower, depending on your experience and skill. Do not forget to prepare your client for the other costs associated with establishing a website, such as:

  1. A secure socket layer (SSL) certificate for e-commerce sites that will need to renewed every year. The SSL certificate serves to encrypt secure information like credit card information, and are issued by a certification authority. The price can range from ten to over a thousand dollars a month and is paid on an annual basis.
  2. Purchasing a domain name, which can range from ten dollars to several thousand, and is also paid for annually.
  3. Plug-ins and themes—These can costs anywhere from a few dollars to several hundred dollars, depending on the client’s needs.

If you decide to charge an hourly rate, use a reputable time tracker so that you can prove the amount of time you spent is legitimate. Clients who question the amount of time billed can be provided with a copy of the information, including screenshots, captured by the time tracker. Establishing an hourly rate is a good idea for projects that are new to you, or when working with a client who wants to add extras as they go in designing the site. Establishing your desired hourly rate is a good idea, even if you offer flat-rate projects. Knowing how much your time is worth is critical in determining how much to charge.

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2 Flat rate

Clients often feel more comfortable with a flat rate, even if it is potentially higher than what they would have paid on an hourly basis. You will need to create a pricing tier of packages that include different rates based on the type of website you are designing. Charging a flat rate helps both you and the client focus on the overall end value of the product. A flat rate also provides a good starting point to upsell customizations. If you charge $6,000 for basic website design that includes up to ten pages of content, you can spell out precisely what is included in that rate. Then, you can offer a slew of add-ons to increase your earnings. Flat rates also help reduce the amount of time you will spend creating custom quotes for every interested design customer. Customized quotes can become quite labor-intensive in a market where the conversion rate may be quite low.

Flat rate pricing that is in keeping with current industry standards, might look something like this:

  • Small business website—four to twelve pages cost $4,500
  • e-Commerce website—fifty to one hundred and fifty products, cost $6,800
  • e-Commerce website—one-hundred nad fifty-one to five-hundred products $9,000
  • e-Commerce website—five-hundred and one to one thousand products cost $12,000
  • Corporate website—twenty-five to seventy-five pages cost $10,000 to $28,000 depending on the number of pages.
  • Database driven website or application website—price ranges from $5,000 to $45,000 depending on the pages and applications needed. (For these websites, a custom quote will often be necessary, but offering a flat rate range gives customers a quick overall idea of your pricing).

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3 Monthly Rate

The appeal of a monthly rate for clients is that they have a total solution to running their website. Clients will often pay a premium for the convenience of website management, and monthly rate pricing allows you to build long-term clients while creating a dependable income stream.

To draw clients to this option, give careful consideration to all that you are offering a monthly rate.

  • Domain and web hosting management
  • CDN implementation
  • SSL installation and management
  • Licensing for themes and plug-ins
  • Backups
  • Third-party storage services
  • Site maintenance
  • Marketing and SEO

You can also offer ongoing services such as annual design audits and website design edits. You can also provide add-on services to boost your income by finding creative solutions for individual clients.

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Final thoughts
Pricing can be tricky because if you overprice yourself, you will not remain competitive. Undervaluing your service is just as risky. You have worked hard to establish valued customer relationships that are jeopardized by a significant rate increase. You also risk the dreaded negative reviews of disgruntled customers who feel mislead by your change in pricing. Take the time to research competitive pricing strategies, and give the customer options with value-added premium services.

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